What people are saying about rebooting and reinvention around the world
Advice if you’re thinking about a career change
Harvard Business Review’s advice podcast addresses the subject of career change. Here’s the notice about that podcast, along with a reading list for those thinking about moving to a new field:
Are you contemplating a career change? In this episode of HBR’s advice podcast, Dear HBR:, cohosts Alison Beard and Dan McGinn answer your questions with the help of Monica Higgins, a professor at Harvard Graduate School of Education and the author of Career Imprints: Creating Leaders Across an Industry. They talk through what to do when you’re having trouble breaking into a new field, you want to leave a secure career path for something riskier, or you’re eyeing a new industry but don’t know where to start.
From Alison and Dan’s reading list for this episode:
HBR: Reinventing Your Career in the Time of Coronavirus by Herminia Ibarra — “Possible selves are the ideas we all have about who we might want to become. Some are concrete and well-informed by experience; others are vague and fuzzy, nascent and untested. Some are realistic; others are pure fantasy. And, naturally, some appeal more to us than others.”
Wall Street Journal: A New Approach to Mentoring by Kathy E. Kram and Monica C. Higgins — “As your career and life unfold, you’ll need to keep reassessing your developmental network; the setup that served you well a few years ago may not work as your situation changes. You must ask yourself which developers can still help you meet your goals, and which need to be eased aside for new ones.”
HBR: Which of These People Is Your Future CEO?: The Different Ways Military Experience Prepares Managers for Leadership by Boris Groysberg, Andrew Hill, and Toby Johnson— “Military service no doubt engenders skills and experiences that are relevant and valuable to corporate leadership. But there’s something else businesses can learn from the armed services: Fit matters. The military is, for many, a leadership crucible that leaves a profound imprint. Yet different military experiences generate different leadership perspectives and styles.”
MIT Sloan Management Review: The Power of Reconnection — How Dormant Ties Can Surprise You by Daniel Z. Levin, Jorge Walter, and J. Keith Murnighan — “The next time you have a problem or issue at work, dust off your Rolodex and get on the phone, Facebook or LinkedIn. In a word: Reconnect. Besides finding the experience personally enriching, odds are good that you will also gain efficient access to novel knowledge from a trusted source.”
Online learning is booming
“Children and college students aren’t the only ones turning to online education during the coronavirus pandemic. Millions of adults have signed up for online classes in the last two months, too — a jolt that could signal a renaissance for big online learning networks that had struggled for years.
“Coursera… added 10 million new users from mid-March to mid-May, seven times the pace of new sign-ups in the previous year. Enrollments at edX and Udacity, two smaller education sites, have jumped by similar multiples.”
New York Times, May 26, 2020
Why This Is The Right Time To Reinvent Your Career
That’s the headline on an article today (05/06/20) in Forbes magazine by Caroline Castrillon, who writes about career, entrepreneurship, and women’s advancement. Following is a highly abridged version of the highlights (you can read the whole article here):
The spread of coronavirus has created a disruption that is unprecedented. During times like these, the natural human reaction is risk aversion. So, the question becomes, is this the right time to reinvent your career? And the answer is, absolutely.
With more control over your schedule, you have more time to dedicate to other areas of your life. Use this moment to take a step back and reinvent your career.
The pandemic has allowed many workers to learn new skills. If you’ve just lost your job, this is an opportunity to change your way of thinking. What are your natural strengths, gifts, and talents? This could be the perfect opportunity to put those into practice.
One study by LinkedIn found that Millennials change jobs four times in their first decade out of college. This rate is nearly double that of the generation before. Now with the pandemic, it is even more acceptable to reinvent your career. Now, probably close to 16% of the US population is unemployed, and many will have no choice but to make a career pivot. This makes career change the new normal.
It’s never too late to hit the reset button and reinvent your career. With crisis comes opportunity. Give yourself permission to pursue the life you have always wanted. Approach your career with a renewed enthusiasm. Your authentic self will thank you for it.
From a workforce development consultant: “Use this time wisely”
“This is one of the greatest times to reinvent. Who is going to have all this time to put things together, put things in place, send out job pursuits, contact people? Use this time wisely. We’ll probably never have, in our lifetime, this much time to put things in place to be able to reinvent our careers or businesses. It’s tough, but there are actually some pluses, depending on how you look at it.”
— Delaware-based workforce development consultant and motivator Darrell “Coach D” Andrews, who has shifted his in-person coaching and workshops to online webinars because of Covid-19. (4/30/20)
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Stephen Wunker, writing in Forbes (4/30/20), says we are now in the Great Reboot. “For many industries, this is a history-making Great Reboot for business realignment, and the updates taking place will lock in epochal change.” He lists six fundamental changes in the Great Reboot:
- Virtualization – Interactions of all kinds have become virtual, and “the ground tilts in favor of those with ample background using virtual platforms.”
- Transformed customer experience – For example, “auto mechanics are now covering the interior surfaces of a car prior to performing work, to convey the care that they are taking to be hygienic.”
- New supply chains – Rebuilt to be more resilient to withstand shocks such as Covid-19.
- Direct sales and service – “Cutting out the sales channel partners who may have historically ruled local distribution, sales, and service.”
- Competitive shakeout in which the winners will be the strongest and most adaptable – for example, how the auto industry transformed after the Great Recession
- “Costovation,” or using the tools of innovation on the cost side of the business
“The time for business change will be short, but it will shake the world,” Wunker writes. “The Great Reboot has shut down the economy, and – together – we are creating the transformations that will shape its new operating system.”
Signs that it’s time for reinvention
Peter Lane Taylor, lifestyle contributor to Forbes magazine, offers Five Signs That It’s Finally Time To Reinvent Yourself (In Business And In Life):
- Spending Too Much Time Online And On Social Media
- Dreaming About Your Dream Job, Not How To Make Your Current Job Better
- Falling Back On Habits That You Already Know Aren’t Good For You
- Experiencing Out Of Mind-Body Interactions At Work (temporary mental detachment from your job)
- Losing Sight Of Your Ultimate Goal
Taylor is a writer for Forbes. He says, “My beat is inspiration. I write about extraordinary people, start-ups, travel, design, urban renewal, food & wine, country music, billionaires, celebrities, and anyone and anything in between that inspires people to live and work passionately.”
Rescuing the global economy
“I see the current crisis as a catalyst for the rebooting of the global economy by retooling towards a human-centered, rather than a capital-centered, socio-economic and technological build out. In the short term, it’s about rescuing the global economy that governments in the world are rushing to do.”
– Navroop Sahdev, founder & CEO of The Digital Economist and fellow at MIT Connection Science. Quoted in Forbes, April 2, 2020, “Rebooting the Global Economy After Coronavirus: Physical Scarcity To Digital Abundance,” by Lawrence Wintermeyer
The harsh realities of a post-crisis world
“Why not look at your life, your family and your community and make some plans on how to do things better for all of you. If you have a small business, it is a good time to make contingency plans for how to come out of this situation. It might mean restructuring and re-focusing your business vision. Of course, you don’t want to do that but the harsh realities of a post-crisis world make it essential.”
– Glenn Zaring, columnist, Manistree (Michigan) News Advocate, April 2, 2020. “Time to reboot America”
The future of work
“Restructured work, redefined roles and reserves of trust, coupled with reskilling of resources is going to be the future of work…Even if a professional is not at risk of losing his/her job, it is important for them to re-assess their skills periodically to know if they will be able to remain competitive during this phase and, acquire appropriate skills for the future. Use of technology and related learning would be a must for survival in a job.”
– Ashwajit Singh, managing director of IPE Global, an Indian consulting company in Outlook, an English language general interest news magazine published in India, April 4, 2020